The Passover reminds us of the suffering and sacrifice made by Jesus Christ. It pictures the time when Jesus died so that we might live. The Passover also demonstrates the tremendous love and mercy of God the Father. Without the Passover, salvation to mankind will never be possible. Therefore, we must not take the Passover lightly. It is a time when we need to seriously ponder upon our Christian calling.
The Apostle Paul instructed us that we need to examine ourselves when it comes to partaking the Passover. He wrote:
I Corinthians 11:28: “But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread, and let him drink of the cup”.
The word “examine” came from the Greek word, dokimazo. It literally means to “test”. Examining ourselves is so important because if we don’t, we will eat and drink judgment to ourselves (verse 29). There is a severe punishment for people who fail to examine themselves.
How to examine yourself
The best way to examine ourselves is through the Bible. If there is one book in the world that we need to read from cover to cover, it must be this book. It shows us how to live this life to the fullest. It shows us the way to eternal life.
The Bible outlines the highest standard that we must all live by. If we are to examine ourselves, it must be through the lens of the Word of God. There is no other standard that we should use.
We must NEVER commit the mistake of examining ourselves by looking at other people. We cannot look at how weak or strong a person is and use that to justify ourselves. By doing so, you are getting into the trap of either pride or bitterness.
One of the best ways to examine ourselves is to read Galatians 5:22. It enumerates the fruit of the Holy Spirit. We need to ask ourselves whether we are improving in these areas of our spiritual life.
Galatians 5:22-23: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.”
How much love have I developed throughout my Christian calling?
Am I a joyful person or does depression dominate most of my day?
How much peace do I have within me?
How much patience do I have when it comes to waiting or bearing with one another?
How much kindness have I demonstrated to my fellow?
Am I good and gentle in my words and actions?
How much faith have I developed or do I easily doubt God when things don’t go my way?
Am I humble or am I filled with pride?
Do I quickly lose control or am I able to control myself?
These are some of the questions we need to ask and determine whether we are really developing the fruit of the Holy Spirit.
Are you in the faith?
The Apostle Paul also adds:
II Corinthians 13:5: Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves.
It is important for us Christians to examine ourselves and check whether we are still in the faith or not. We need to prove our faith in God and Jesus Christ. Faith is critical because without faith we can never please God (Hebrews 11:6). It is only through faith that we are able to come to God and believe that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
Our faith also represents the belief that we have as a Christian. We need to check as well whether our beliefs and the doctrines we hold are in congruence with the Word of God.
Self-examination involves a humble and prayerful attitude toward God. It is the process of identifying the areas where we stopped growing spiritually. We need to pray to God to show us our sins and faults. After recognizing them, we need to have the willing heart to change.
Having all the Biblical knowledge amounts to nothing if we don’t apply them in our lives. Even if we already read the Bible, memorize all relevant verses, and quote any scripture, all of these will be useless without application.
Having the Passover attitude throughout whole year
Passover reminds us that we must never stay stagnant in our Christian calling. We must continually grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Self-examination should not only be done during the Passover. It is an important process that we need to habitually perform. Yes, the Passover should not only initiate self-examination but rather it must intensify the effort that we have already exerted throughout the year.
God expects us to spiritually grow and mature. He wants us to become profitable servants who burn with the flame of great passion for doing His work. The Passover is the perfect time for us to look back and determine whether we have spiritually grown or not. May we have the wisdom and willingness to change for the betterment of our spiritual life.